Yesterday I was lucky enough to be in Detroit to see the White Sox beat the Tigers in ten innings. It was an up and down game that ended on an up luckily. Chris Sale pitched the last 2 2/3 innings to get his first ever career win. I was happy for the young man. After meeting him in Indy when the Charlotte Knights were in town I really started to like Chris. He was very down to earth for a man who suddenly had everything going his way. It was great to be at his first win. Omar Vizquel also reached a career milestone Monday. He set the record for most games played by a foreign born player. He passed Rafael Palmerio to place his name in the record books. I only mention this because Chris Sale was born four days before Omar played his first Major League game. I just thought that was a cool fact. Getting to the ballpark proved to be a chore. Our GPS took us a weird way, and we got stuck in between the city’s Labor Day parade and the ballpark. We had to go way out of our way to finally get to somewhere that we could park. We then ran across the street in the middle of the parade to get to the stadium. A picture of our view as we crossed the road can be seen above. Once inside the stadium we went out to watch batting practice. I had a shot at a couple of balls, but Andruw Jones hit one tailor made for me. He hit the ball right to me, but some guy who said he was an usher jumped up on a seat and nabbed it. I didn’t get a ball, but had some fans tracking a few. After batting practice we walked out around the outfield to see the statues. They are all well done, and are great to look at. Once that was checked off the list I went up to the upper deck behind home plate to get some pictures. It really is a beautiful park that looks good from all angles.
The game was a matchup of players that were traded for each other. The Tigers sent Edwin Jackson to Arizona for among others Max Scherzer. Scherzer had the better of the matchup for most of the game. Both pitchers threw well over one hundred pitches on the day resting their bullpens. The hero of the game early on was Don Kelly of the Tigers. He made some very nice catches in the field, and had his bat going as well. He had an RBI in the first inning, and hit a two run homer just to our left in the 4th that put the Tigers ahead. When the White Sox fans tied the game in the eighth inning the Tiger fans like the one above were not too happy.
A.J. Pierzynski was the offensive star of the game. He drove in three of the Sox five runs on the day. He plated two of them in the second inning with his single. He then made three straight outs before coming up to the plate with two outs in the tenth. He is shown above just before contact on his game winning hit that scored Alejandro De Aza. He has been clutch lately. Alex Rios and Alexei Ramirez both came off the bench to have good days as well.
Yesterday was also my first chance to see Manny Ramirez in person as a member of the White Sox. He hit a few impressive home runs in batting practice, but hit for singles in the game. He singled and scored in the second inning. He also singled to start off the tenth inning, and advanced to second when Ryan Rayburn misplayed the ball. He was then taken out for De Aza who scored the game winning run. In all it was a good day for the new aquisition. A picture of Manny hitting his single in the tenth is shown above.
Manny would never have had the chance for his second hit without some help. In the bottom of the eighth inning Brandon Inge hit a shot that from my vantage point appeared foul. I yelled foul ball, but everyone around me started yelling. I looked down at the field, and the runners were trotting around the basepaths. Inge didn’t run at first, but then took his trot. The umpires got together and decided to take a look at the replay. The entire time all this was going on I kept yelling that it was a foul ball. The fans around me didn’t seem to like that too much. When the umpires came back and ruled it a foul ball they showed their disapproval. I took a picture of the scoreboard with the good news on it, and in the process got some of the fan reaction.
Overall my day at the park was a good one. I got to see a good game, and finally got some pictures of the ballpark. One of the cooler aspects though was after the game was over. I had bought a game used ball from the day, and was getting the lineup card from the Tigers dugout. I was told that I would have to wait a while until it was brought up. We ended up waiting so long that a Tigers security guard nicely asked us to leave. After we told him what was going on he let us stay, but told us he had to escort us out when we got our things. While we were waiting Greg told us a lot about the park, and why the outfield appeared so wet. I guess they had a huge concert last week, and tried to get the field back by watering it. A couple of times during the game players dug in as they dove into the ground. I have never seen so many divets left by players body parts. It looked a lot like the Purdue football field a couple of years ago. When I got my lineup card (now famous for being Sale’s 1st win) we were escorted out of the stadium. Now I can tell my kids that I was escorted out of Comerica Park after the Sox won in the tenth. We were also the last fans in the stadium. Anyone who knows me knows that this was by far the first time for that.